When did we see you in prison?

//When did we see you in prison?

Monday, October 17

To the extent that you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.—Matt. 25:40.

Jesus has been speaking to Peter, Andrew, James, and John, his close companions. They have just heard him relate illustrations about the faithful and discreet slave, the ten virgins, and the talents. Jesus concludes his discussion with one more parable. He describes a time when “the Son of man” will judge “all the nations.” How this illustration must have fascinated his disciples! In it, Jesus focuses on two groups, one classed as sheep and the other as goats. And he highlights an important third group that he identifies as “brothers” of “the King.” (Matt. 25:31-46) Jehovah’s people have long been intrigued by this illustration and rightly so, for in it Jesus speaks about the fate of people. He reveals why some will receive everlasting life while others will be cut off in death forever.

COMMENTARY

For well over a half century the Watchtower taught that the parables of the faithful and evil slaves, the wise and foolish virgins and the industrious and sluggish slave entrusted with their master’s talents, had all been fulfilled long ago. But in 2013 that all changed. The Watchtower reset the coming of the master to call his slaves to account to the future, which is surely the correct understanding.

Whether this was done as a result of some brothers being exposed to the information presented in the the dozens of copies of the first edition of Jehovah Himself Has Become King (2005) that I sent to then-Governing Body members, department heads, branch overseers and the like, is not important. What is important is that Jehovah’s Witnesses, at least the ones who are paying attention, have a basis to anticipate a day of reckoning looms —when the master comes to call his slaves to account.

Although their big reset essentially disappeared the evil slave, dissolving him into a mere hypothetical (“if ever that slave should say in his heart ‘my master is delaying’”), the mere fact that there is a day in which Christ intends to distinguish those deemed to have been faithful with what was entrusted to them —appointing him over all of his belongings, etc, —leaving the rejected on the outside, which is where the weeping and gnashing of their teeth will be, indicates that the true brothers of Christ have not been revealed yet.

After all, if there are wicked and sluggish slaves and foolish virgins in company with the faithful and discreet, how could the sheep be righteously judged? Shall the sheep be rewarded for having ministered to the evil slave who beats his fellow slaves in the master’s absence?

Even though in 1995 the Watchtower discarded what had until-then been “present truth,” namely, the idea that the worldwide preaching of Jehovah’s Witnesses was accomplishing the separation of the sheep and the goats —resetting it to a point in the future —the Watchtower still retains the now-untenable notion that the sheep and goats, although to be judged at a point in the future, are, nonetheless, judged based upon their actions (or inaction) now. So, basically, the Watchtower still teaches that the preaching work is presently separating the sheep and the goats —only they don’t officially teach that any more, it is simply implied by their still-inchoate explanation of the parable.

The most incongruous aspect of the Watchtower’s interpretation of the parable of the sheep and the goats is that the basis for judgment is whether or not people of the world ministered to Christ’s brothers when they were homeless, hungry, naked, sick or imprisoned. Needless to say, none of the brothers at Bethel are in that condition.

On the contrary, over the course of the past few weeks the Bethel family has been busily moving into their luxurious country estate in Warwick, New York. An insider has told me that the Governing Body and their spouses have chosen the choicest apartments and offices for themselves with lakefront views. Obviously, they are far from being homeless —enjoying living conditions that many of Jehovah’s Witnesses can only dream of.

A room with a view

A room with a view

And although all the Bethel workers must now serve themselves cafeteria style, waiters being axed as a cost-cutting measure —those over 60, which is most all of the Governing Body, have waiters that serve them at their table. Obviously, none have gone hungry. And when the Governing Body travel, they are chauffeured in luxury automobiles. And when they fly around the world, they first class —a luxury that many of Jehovah’s Witnesses could not afford. They vacation in tropical resorts, and presumably stay in upscale hotels. And if a Governing Body member or their spouse is ill or has any medical need whatsoever, it is all taken care of at no expense to them. There is no need for anyone to personally look after them. And, needless to say, neither the Governing Body or another anointed person that we are aware of is in prison at this time.

Since it is evident the princes of Bethel have had their fill and are rich already —living like kings at the expense of the lowly publishers —the Watchtower is compelled to ignore the basis for the judgment of the sheep and the goats in lieu of the notion that merely being an active publisher qualifies one as having ministered to Christ’s brothers.

The underlying presumption is that the coming of the master will merely confer upon them an even greater reward than they have already taken to themselves. In that regard they are very much like the Jews who put their trust in fallacious words, claiming the temple of Jehovah in their midst was a safeguard against calamity.

As regards Jesus’ illustrations, the simple truth is that up until the moment the master comes there are good slave and bad slaves in the same organization. Long before Jesus uttered those parables Jehovah had related a similar illustration to Jeremiah. Jeremiah wrote: “Then Jehovah showed me two baskets of figs set before the temple of Jehovah… One basket had very good figs, like early figs, but the other basket had very bad figs, so bad that they could not be eaten. Jehovah then asked me: ‘What do you see, Jeremiah?’ So I said: ‘Figs; the good figs are very good, but the bad ones are very bad, so bad that they cannot be eaten.”

Jehovah went on to explain that he would keep an eye on the “good figs” in their captivity and ultimately: “And I will give them a heart to know me, that I am Jehovah. They will become my people, and I will become their God, for they will return to me with all their heart.”

Their becoming God’s people and being given a heart to know him is not an ordinary thing. As the 31st chapter of Jeremiah indicates, their coming to know Jehovah means the accomplishment of the new covenant and the end of the teaching and disciple-making work.

What about the outcome for the bad figs? Jehovah goes on to explain: “I will make them an object of horror and calamity to all the kingdoms of the earth, a reproach, a proverbial saying, a cause for ridicule, and a curse in all the places to which I disperse them. And I will send against them the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, until they have perished from the land that I gave to them and to their forefathers.”’

In other words, they will be made to weep and gnash their teeth —knowing they have been judged adversely. And ultimately God’s judgment comes in the form of the sword, famine and pestilence, which is the precise backdrop to Jesus’ four illustrations and coincides with the opening of the seal of revelation that bring about war, food shortages and pestilence.

As should be expected, Jehovah’s Witnesses are oblivious to the significance of the darkening clouds of war on the horizon. That is because their Governing Body has no idea what is going on and apparently has no interest. The result will not be pretty. We may expect the Watchtower’s luxurious new palace to be shuttered when the missiles begin to fly. And the princes of Bethel will be put out on the street.

Their blindness and deafness is legend, so much so that 2,500 years ago Jehovah saw fit to speak to the situation. Of course, now he is ignored. But in the future it will be impossible to ignore God. Then these questions will be most pertinent:

“Listen, you who are deaf;

Look and see, you who are blind.

Who is blind except my servant,

So deaf as the messenger I send?

Who is so blind as the one rewarded,

So blind as the servant of Jehovah?

You see many things, but you do not keep watch.

You open your ears, but you do not listen.

For the sake of his righteousness,

Jehovah has taken pleasure in magnifying the law and making it glorious.

But this is a people plundered and pillaged;

All of them are trapped in the holes and hidden in the prisons.

They have been plundered with no one to rescue them,

And pillaged with no one to say: ‘Bring them back!’”


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2016-12-08T15:09:45+00:00 October 17th, 2016|Commentary|62 Comments
  • The Ancient Witness

    So it is said, so it shall be!

  • Bobby 6343

    Hopefully the “Governing Body” will be able to see Jesus’s coming, since “the Governing Body and their spouses have chosen the choicest apartments and offices for themselves with “lakefront views.”

    • Ezekiel 16:62
      62 “‘And I myself will establish my covenant with you; and you will have to know that I am Jehovah.

      Ezekiel 22:16
      16 And you will be dishonored before the nations, and you will have to know that I am Jehovah.’”

    • 1914for100Alex

      If they could, I think their conversation would go something like this:

      “Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Uh oh…

      • Burt Reynolds

        That’s just so funny. I can see it now… I know know who will be making a donation then…..

    • T L C

      So true…:-)

  • T L C

    Wow…the GB has to fly first class? I thought surely by now there’d be a private jet with jw.org inscribed on it. But then again…that wouldn’t be very inconspicuous… 🙂

    • I’ve traveled a lot of places and never ever got to fly first class. I’m always in the back by the toilet room??

      • Burt Reynolds

        I’ve never met you there. You could have been sitting next to me!

      • T L C

        Me too!!!

  • Anderiega

    Hello dear friends. I’m just reaching out to say hello. Matthew 25:40 is such a beautiful scripture, but even this quotation of Jesus Christ is being twisted by well intentioned “blind” elders. Perhaps I’m being disrespectful for calling a duck a duck, and if so I apologize.

    In the past I used to feel tremendous shame and guilt over past transgressions, but I’m happy and thankful to report that after many years of prayer and meditation, I now RESONATE with knowing that Jesus’s blood covered my sins.

    But today I’m struggling. I feel very very sad. Last night I fell asleep after reading and watching all the latest reports of USA/Russian war talk. I meditated on Matthew 18:12 (rejoicing over the 1 lost sheep more than the 99) and I prayed for Jesus to please please come. Perhaps I’m being a selfish toddler (while people are being literally bombed in Syria) for feeling depressed over the whitewashed and twisted “God’s Kingdom Rules” book. It’s so de-energizing to me….to sit through a study of half truths and lies.

    So I got up this morning and thought to myself “OK, I’m going to call Bethel and ask my question because they love to exclaim how Christ is their head.”

    So I called Walkill and asked my question. After being on hold for 8 minutes, I finally was connected to a brother. Mind you, he could’ve informed me BEFORE I asked my question that Bethel no longer answers questions, but here’s what happened:

    Me: “I have a question regarding the “God’s Kingdom Rules” book. Why do we say that the Bible students began to discern Christ’s invisible presence in 1914 when our older literature shows that 1874 was the accepted date of Christ’s presence and 1914 wasn’t adopted as that year until 1930 WT or officially in 1943 in the book “the truth shall make you free.” (p 324)

    (I was interrupted 3 times while trying to ask my question)

    Bethel elder: “we do not answer questions over the phone anymore. You must ask your elders these questions. We have less bethel staff, so you need to ask your elders. That is the theocratic arrangement. Or you may write in with your question and wait for a response.”

    me: “well since I already have you on the phone, can you understand why I’m calling Bethel for this kind of question, since my elders did not write the book?”

    Bethel elder: “I cannot give you my opinion.”

    Me: “ok. Sorry for taking up your time.”

    Click.

    I’m sorry friends. I’m really trying to juggle truth and being a Jehovah’s witness. I’m just having a low day. I feel drained and discouraged.

    • ewatchman

      You shouldn’t let someone else’s dishonesty get you down. Hold your head high, you are a truth seeker, not a religionist.

      • Anderiega

        Thank you for your kind words. Yes, I’m just reading the book of Hebrews today. It’s helping my mood. If the Jews had to put up with the oppressive, greedy Pharisees for centuries, I can certainly endure a few years of WT incoherence.

    • If you could have seen the brothers face on the other end of the line.
      Be like………… https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d48a9f0d2baa971e3f88df70cf6e7ed58febd08bbb1b215a6c32d4781c19ee88.jpg

    • 1914for100Alex

      You’re not alone. Things are certainly getting worse out there. It doesn’t sound like you got anywhere with the brother on the phone, but who knows? Maybe it’ll spark some curiosity in him. Have you considered looking for people on the Internet that are lost and confused? Instead of trying to get through to Bethel, maybe you could get through to someone that has left the congregation. You don’t have to look far to find people that have lost hope. I don’t know if Robert has any objections to posting links to his site on any other particular sites, but I have to believe we can help others out there by showing them the things we’ve found here. Just yesterday I posted a link to Robert’s explanation of 1914 to a guy that took issue with all their wrong dates. I have no idea if he knows about Robert as I did not go through all his posts. What I did see is that he left within the past year, after being a Witness for 30 and associated with them for 50. My response to him is still pending site review, but hopefully he checks it out once it posts. We have to help where we can, and not worry about what we can’t change 🙂

      • Anderiega

        Thanks. Honestly, I had no motive of trying to “wake up” a bethelite….I genuinely wanted to know the answer to my question…since they write (or know the people who write) the books we study.

    • Burt Reynolds

      What did you expect? How could he have replied? If he was of the truth, a secret witness, then how could he have answered without being thrown out? He would have had to make a decision on the spot. Maybe he was a doubter but not ready to make a stand. Maybe he was a poor victim of a victim and chained in blinkers. Maybe he was arrogant and haughty. They are clearly scared of being recorded or of saying the wrong thing and as the scriptures point out, the man of lawlessness is in the process of being exposed and he will do anything to maintain his position as he sees it to be. So, ‘Seek truth where it may be found.’

      For me, All of us are scared of the coming tribulation. Everyone wants the tribulation to come, but no one wants to die, starve, to be alone. Every night I plead with Jehovah to expose to me the certainty of truth so that I can have confidence as a weapon, and yet I know he will not. I feel myself as inadequate in every way, trying not to sin and failing and the weight of judgement comes upon me and I feel like giving up. I’m old and weak physically and spiritually and I know and remember less each day it seems, but the one point stays in my mind and which I am so grateful for to Jehovah for revealing it through Christ. The greatest commandment of all is love. No more, no less. And I have it. That much I do have. It may not be enough, maybe my sin outweighs it, but it will not be my lack of knowledge that will bring me down, but my ability to choose above my sinning, the pathway I love. I am working on it. It will not be that I force a confession from the watchtower, as that belongs to Jehovah and it is his exoneration alone. No, it will be my own learning and application. It will be if my love for Jehovah is strong enough to overcome the weight of Satan pulling at my feet of clay. Sometimes the road seems so long. So no. Not at all are you alone, either in like mind here on earth, or in the mercy of Jesus and of Jehovah above.

      • Anderiega

        You’re right Burt. I said a little prayer and impulsively called today. I didn’t think about the other brother on the other end….I was just thinking about all our literature and this book we’re studying that rewrites history. I temporarily forgot that “telling the truth” is not easy for some. My current prayer is just to “stay in my lane”…I don’t want to cause an accident.

      • Annie

        Burt, who made YOU the Judge, even of yourself?

        Jeremiah 24;7 “And I will give them a heart to know me, that I am Jehovah. They will become my people, and I will become their God, for they will return to me with all their heart.”
        In fact the whole chapter is beautiful, so I suggest you read & thoroughly digest it while you spend the next hour in the naughty corner for showing such lack of faith in yourself & in the saving power of our Great Father, Jehovah. He didn’t guide you here just because He likes your sense of humour, same as He didn’t bring me here to be the tea lady!

        Burt, don’t turn your eyes away from the fact that Jesus died for YOU & ALL of us here who are watching, listening & learning, otherwise you are rejecting that wonderful sacrifice & wracking Jesus with more pains.
        I shed tears when I read that from you, Burt.
        .
        .
        .
        Oh & by the way, while I am ranting at you………cut out the physically OLD comment! I am 7 months older than you. *big hug*

        • Burt Reynolds

          If I was judging Anderiega or the brother, then I’m sorry, I did not mean to. I was looking at it from the point of view of the brother that he could have in any one of a set of situations and to seek truth where it may be found, meant to go to the source of the truth where the water of life is given freely and not hidden along with anguish that beats down upon the soul and seeks to hinder, as was the case here. Jehovah’s organisation no longer gives answer to questions? …….even the very stones will cry out. Go to your local elder? …..one already conditioned to give the company policy, a veritable sheep crying in the wilderness, cast adrift, unless by some chance they are one who moves secretly amongst those very sheep. Prayer, or here or at the table of other brothers that Jehovah has provided to which one may be directed is where truth can be found and given freely as the congregations sink into a spirit of despair as shown in the bible prophesy and where only scraps of food and encouragement remain as pointed out by a brother the other day who wrote about the trivialities discussed over and again at the meetings he attended instead of the meat of the word. Maybe my eyes were clouded by riling at the numbness to be found at bethel. I hate their haughty stubbornness and the way that they deal with the sheep, or maybe it is better to say I hate the blinding spirit that hangs over them, but I did not mean to judge them, but to point out the mouthpieces that some may currently be. But thank you for your thoughts. I will endeavour to consider all in my comments, fairly and without prejudice.

          • Annie

            Burt, my dearest brother, I was ranting (jokingly) at YOU, not the guy from Bethel or Anderiega. I was sad, very sad to read your downheartedness. I have felt your dejectedness (or confusion?) lately from both here & FB & I am unhappy that you are feeling almost like a lost sheep. (It’s so hard to properly explain)

            I know how you feel about that lot at Bethel, I feel it myself, I was so angry to read about their first-class treatment when I know of so many who are really struggling to make ends meet – they sound like TV Evangellsts who are only in it for the money & prestige. I can’t even watch the monthly broadcasts anymore because of the anger I feel when I see their hand made suits & Rolex watches!

            I don’t really want to go to the meetings again as I feel that, because we know their treachery & lies, we are accessories after the fact to their gross misbehaviour. But, I go because Brother Robert (& even Perimeno) has advised us, even though that other chosen one I mentioned to you advises that we should keep away. I honestly & truly don’t know if Jehovah wants us to be going to the meetings, I’m sure He does though.

            I hate that you feel not worthy, Burt, because you, yes, YOU are so loving & kind to everyone & how could you fail to be worthy? You are searching & loving the TTATT & you show it so much here & on FB – it’s a total joy to read your comments because I know they come from your heart (even when you are being sarcastic;) )
            I really do need to find out how to post those little emoticons on here so that you all know when I have ‘tongue in cheek’, or I am feeling ‘bleurgh’ or whatever.

            • Annie

              talking of ‘judging’, Burt, I had a FB temporary JW friend who blocked me as an apostate because he saw on my Timeline the article about Hedge Funds from Robert, he tried to advise me that Robert is an apostate & the article was all lies.

              He decided I didn’t think of Jesus as our Leader because I said that Jesus hasn’t taken the heavenly Throne yet. I told him I believed that, yes, it is Jehovah’s organisation but that satan is pulling the strings.

              He only ‘friended’ me so that he could berate me! :'( (crying emoticon there <)

              Another one on YouTube is telling me that Robert only 'thinks' he is anointed, so I asked him to send me a list of those who are 'really' anointed since he is obviously in charge of the list! :'( .'( < more crying…hah!

            • Anderiega

              ???? I’m sorry my sister. Almost the exact same thing happened to me this week. I was called an apostate for my ww3 postings. Geesh! I must say it stung more than I thought it would. The brotherhood is turning into a hornets nest of paranoid trigger-happy yellow jackets. We’ve gotta look on the bright side: the end must (hopefully) be close. ?

            • Paul describes the situation we could expect among God’s own people during the time of the end in these words: “Remember this! In the last days there will be many troubles, because people will love themselves, love money, brag, and be proud. They will say evil things against others and will not obey their parents or be thankful or be the kind of people God wants. They will not love others, will refuse to forgive, will gossip, and will not control themselves. They will be cruel, will hate what is good, will turn against their friends, and will do foolish things without thinking. They will be conceited, will love pleasure instead of God, and will act as if they serve God but will not have his power. (2 Timothy 3:1-5, NCV) The prevalence of such individuals within God’s household would cause God’s faithful servants much suffering, but for our encouragement Jesus made this promise: “He that has endured to the end is the one that will be saved.” (Matt. 24:10-13)

            • Bklyn Kevin

              It seems as if they have been pre marked with the mark of the wild beast in their foreheads as to be struck with leprosy like King Uz·ziʹah was when he had become Haughty / presumptuous, but not a literal physical leprosy but a spiritual leprosy in their attitude in opposition to Jehovah as it were.

              Haughty Uzziah made a leper
              2 Chronicles 26:16-21.Read more>
              https://www.jw.org/en/publications/bible/nwt/books/2-chronicles/26/#v14026018

            • Joe Dman

              BK, can you recall the script where Paul was told to offer a sacrifice? I know of the one in Acts where Paul took the three and shaved there heads, but wasnnt there another?

            • Joe the cosmologist

              Acts 21, verse 26, could be the scripture your refering too?

            • Joe Dman

              Thanks Joe but that’s the one where back up in verse 24 they were going to have their heads shaved. I was having a discussion with a staunch JW over the issue of Thanksgiving. Her and her friends posted some bogus video that proved to be fabricated. Paul and the matter of conscience was brought up and I referred to Paul and the Apostles preaching in the synagogues and even offering a sacrifice. In essence he did there in Acts, but it’s not straight forward enough for a JW to reason that Paul was in fact involved in the offering of sacrifices. Although in verse 24 he would ceremonially cleanse himself with them. I suppose that’s the only scripture about Paul being involved with an offering. I suppose an offering is a sacrifice??

            • Bklyn Kevin

              I gave this a brief researched this morning but the truth is I’m not exactly sure of what you’re looking for, perhaps you can give me more specifics and I’ll give it another go.

            • Joe Dman

              I remember Robert writing about how Paul was persuaded to make an offering in order to alleviate some concerns levelled by the religious leaders then. I thought there was an account that was more detailed but on closer examination i believe it is the account in acts. But thanks for giving it your attention.

            • Burt Reynolds

              Hello Annie, Roberts anointing is known only to him and is between him and Jehovah. As you pointed out to your friend, give me the list of those who are. No one knows but the one who is. However, the knowledge Robert has reflects the love of Jehovah to me, even though I am ignorant by comparison and what Robert is doing is witnessing. Giving a loving provision of a witness Is not dependant on anointing as surely one coming to an understanding of jehovah is by his grace and their humility. By your works you are known. I’m just grateful to Jehovah that Robert has pursued this site and work over all these years and that he speaks truth and nothing is asked in return. Wonderful.

            • Burt Reynolds

              Hello Annie, the issue about meeting attendance is beyond me. There are good reasons to attend, pointed out by Robert and I will not offer criticism to his advice as I do not think there is a wrong point of view in this facet. I was speaking with a brother of late who gave me great insight into the eye of jehovah. He spoke of the desolation of the temple and that from there on, there was no temple needed in that respect and which is true. I can’t quote him precisely but this is what it says in my heart…that Jehovah will sustain those whose lot it is to remain outside of the congregation and I am thinking here as well as those sisters who have suffered abuse at the hands of brothers; of those who have been disfellowshipped, of those who are pulled by the need of their own sanity to stay away and who have become depressed over what is coming from the ‘temple’ or provision of Jehovah at this time, – as shown in the example of his people being sent to Babylon – so that they may survive in some way.

              What struck me abut this brothers biblically referenced thinking was that he said that though there is a place for returning, Jehovah understands those who may not or cannot choose to for sake of conscience or for the sake of loved ones whom they strive to save by other means. He showed that ‘Jehovah will sustain those ones outside his temple…’ Suggesting that Jehovah knows the teaching from the temple at this time is or can be unhelpful to some. Or intolerable.

              And yes, the organisation, without any other prophesy or teaching, is seen to be crumbling and even disheartening. Even the blind can see, even me, and that Jehovah will ‘sustain’ those forced out, those who leave, those who cannot return.,but carry the word of Jehovah in his or her heart, yes, he will sustain them because there also lies the temple of Jehovah, in their heart.

              What manner of comfort is that, that Jehovah sees the heart and sustains US, when all along, I thought that the entire onus of obedience was on us to come to him. Instead, I learn that Jehovah comes to us as well, because of our heart condition that he has seeded in us. It is a comfort beyond reckoning that Jehovah comes to us, that he does not try us beyond what we can bear, that he searches us out because he desires that no one dies but that they come to know him and live. He searches us out from within our own treacherous heart, that small spark of truth and love for him, hidden under sin. And thus it is is true, that the greatest of these commandments is love, but that it is extended to us, as much as we are able to reflect it back to its owner.

              For me, I have few words that can express the meaning of this love and it’s hope, but that for the creator to see fit to come to us, to sustain us, is unspeakable in its devotion.

              So yes, as Robert has noted already, it is up to us to do what we feel we can, and direct us where we can do much good and who would argue that? Not me. But that Jehovah comes to us to sustain us Rings aloud the words of Jesus, ‘for look! I am with you…’

            • Annie

              yes, Jehovah WILL find us, Burt. I read the article that Searcher left a link for on Perimeno regarding Gods Grace. That was fabulous learning that Gods Grace has a better meaning than when they tell us that it is Undeserved Kindness from Jehovah- makes it far more appealing!

            • Song of Hannah

              Jehovah will collect you back into his sheepfold when the time is ready, Burt. Not only that, but he promises he himself will personally do it.

              Ezekiel 34:10 This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘I am against the shepherds, and I will demand an accounting of them for my sheep, and I will dismiss them from feeding my sheep, and the shepherds will no longer feed themselves. I will rescue my sheep from their mouth, and they will no longer be food for them.’” 11 “‘For this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: “Here I am, and I myself will search for my sheep, and I will care for them. 12 I will care for my sheep like a shepherd who has found his scattered sheep and is feeding them. I will rescue them from all the places where they were scattered in the day of clouds and thick gloom. 13 I will bring them out from the peoples and collect them together from the lands and bring them into their land and feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the streams and by all the dwelling places of the land. 14 In a good pasture I will feed them, and the land where they graze will be on Israel’s high mountains. They will lie down there in a good grazing land, and they will feed on choice pastures on the mountains of Israel.” 15 “‘“I myself will feed my sheep, and I myself will make them lie down,” declares the Sovereign Lord Jehovah. 16 “The lost one I will search for, the stray I will bring back, the injured I will bandage, and the weak I will strengthen; but the fat one and the strong one I will annihilate. I will feed that one with judgment.”

            • Burt Reynolds

              The watchtower will claim they are aliens and say the end is not yet.

            • Burt Reynolds

              What a lovely scripture Hannah. Thank you.

            • muldoon55 .

              Absolutely stunning response that resonates with me.
              Thank you Hannah

            • Joe Dman

              Burt. Thanks brother. Your words resonate more than you know. Sometimes i just want to curl up and wait and hope. I haven’t felt the desire to even attempt to go to a meeting in almost a month. ThIs feeling of despair is difficult to overcome. Of course my wife thinks it’s her. She has never seen me as emotional as I’ve been these last few years. But here of late things just don’t feel right. It’s probably an internal awareness that things are about to get very bad and I’ll be struck with the fear that i could have done more for those around me. Especially my daughter. The knowledge that we will be happy and joyful in the kingdom does little for me, knowing that first I’ll have to experience the greatest loss i could ever imagine. May Jehovah be with us all.

            • Burt Reynolds

              Joe, if you would like to exchange thoughts you can always contact me on facebook at Groke Goddard

            • Joe Dman

              Hey Burt. I’ll friend you when i get back to my laptop. I’m having issues with my phone. Beware. I set up my fb when i was df’d and i haven’t abandoned my friends that didn’t abandon me when my spiritual family did. I’m still a little rough around the edges but you should have seen me four years ago.

            • Burt Reynolds

              Don’t worry, I have to clean my Fb daily as my son speaks an entirely foreign language, as well as a few others I am ‘encouraging’ with the Word. Just in case others tune in!

            • muldoon55 .

              You articulated something that I’ve been struggling with for a long time namely meeting attendance while disfellowshipped.
              I feel I could never go back knowing what I know now, for I would be disfellowshipped in perpetuity and could never receive the encouragement necessary to flourish as a Christian.
              I pray,read the Bible almost daily with my non witness wife, informal witness as opportunities arise and lots of e-witnessing on the various blogs. I have a yearning for the Kingdom of God to accomplish Gods will on earth and really try to cultivate fruits of the spirit in my life.
              I guess my point is that if Jehovah does not sustain me in my isolated state , how can I do these things or feel so strongly for His will to be done?
              Isn’t the bearing of fruits of spirit evidence of His spirit present within?
              I feel,and it has been presented in this forum that perhaps after Christs enthronement, that a witnessing work will occur that perhaps folks like us can participate in
              What do you think?

            • Song of Hannah

              Absolutely! Rev 10:7- tells us there will be a secondary preaching campaign after the initial “good news” is preached. Hoping to be worthy of the privilege!

              Rev 10:7 But in the days when the seventh angel is about to blow his trumpet, the sacred secret that God declared as good news to his own slaves the prophets is indeed brought to a finish.” 8 And I heard the voice out of heaven speaking again with me and saying: “Go, take the opened scroll that is in the hand of the angel who is standing on the sea and on the earth.” 9 I went to the angel and told him to give me the little scroll. He said to me: “Take it and eat it up, and it will make your stomach bitter, but in your mouth it will be sweet like honey.” 10 I took the little scroll out of the hand of the angel and ate it, and in my mouth it was sweet like honey, but when I had eaten it, my stomach was made bitter. 11 And they said to me: “You must prophesy again about peoples and nations and tongues and many kings.”

            • muldoon55 .

              Thank you Hannah.
              Your understanding of scripture is impressive.
              You have encouraged me very much

            • LW

              It will take a lot of courage to give that final witness to the world .

            • Song of Hannah

              True. It will only be by Jehovah’s spirit that we could obtain the spine to get it done.

            • Burt Reynolds

              I think that you may well be right. To be honest, I cannot make up my mind and feel that everyone must make up theirs. It’s not for me to say one thing or the other, only my own personal feelings in answer to your question. The sense of feeling I have on the matter is similar to yours though and similar to others both on this site and off, though this is not to say that others who think differently are wrong. Quite the opposite, as I see value in both actions. I feel comforted in knowing that Jehovah reads the heart and the intent, that he actively seeks out his sheep, even off colour ones like me. I also feel, especially so after today’s article, that the watchtower is wallowing in filth and the corruption and haughtiness reeks to heaven. But the spirit of attendance as spoken of through Roberts articles and which is supported by the scripture I feel, is one of fellowship to the lost brothers and sisters who are still there ….but like as the scripture says, ask ‘where will we (they) go?’ Well, I want to be there for them, but at a time when they will be receptive and at a time when I have done all I can to help my wife who is an unbeliever like yours. If I go to save others and Nile t the feelings of my wife,….well, how does one answer that in their conscience? But I witness where I can and seek opportunity to do so. I will go, I will either go in or stand outside…..and I will offer help, both now and in the future in any way that I can, because, I was once one of these people, these sheep that are lost. And I cannot expect mercy unless I give it myself. Jehovah does sustain me, moreso now than at any time in my life. I know he will help me overcome my difficulties and give me a job of work to do, to help others as I have been helped. I feel that the temple of Jehovah resides in the heart. This heaving monster that the watchtower has become, certainly limits some in their approach to it, but we need to find the survivors. I should not worry about disfellowshipping from men. They neither have the power or the authority to disfellowship you from Jehovah. That is something we do to ourselves. Clearly you are not in that frame and so it only behoves you to discover how you may use your ‘talent’ that has been given you. Same for me. Same for all of us. Staying on the site and keeping yourself fed with the truth is the best course of action for all of us. If anything resembles a temple in this time, it is this site. It is the only place that I know of where the answer applies….’where else would we go?’

            • muldoon55 .

              Thank you for your kind reply.
              Hannah has been an encouragement to me as well.
              It is my hope that one day we shall worship together brother

            • Burt Reynolds

              That would be nice. What continent do I start looking on after the tribulation!?

            • muldoon55 .

              Who knows where we’ll be scattered when it all comes down but my current location is 60 miles w of Chicago

      • Annie
    • sally

      I understand why you did that. I am very like you, I want to challenge it so much! As I was reading your post, I was thinking “I am going to literally memorise A’s conversation with the Bethel Brother and ask the same in my study later this week”. But then I read Burt’s post, and as usual he put’s things into perspective. I won’t ask the question, I already have asked a few, it has not gotten me anywhere, rather it has left me shattered and relations strained. Its just not the right time, but it is a real test. I haven’t attended the mid week meeting since this book started, I had been sometimes attending that along with regular Sunday meetings, but I am struggling to get the umph in me to go to midweek because of the book. I suppose I ought to get past that feeling, but I hate the fact when I hear things that are incorrect it makes me feel angry. I don’t want to go to meetings and feel angry. I suppose this is a burden to bear having the good fortune of learning the real truth but being a fallible sinful human being at the same time. We probably all need therapy! Anyway, I just wanted to say I admire your tenacity and zealousness despite the problems it can cause and I hope you get a chance soon to say ask your questions to someone who will let you know that they “get it”.

      • Anderiega

        Thank you Sally for your words. If my (gong-ish) example can be of help to anybody else out there, then I feel better. Burt’s words ring through my gong: “we cannot force a confession from the WT.” I listened in on the phone for the first three meetings of this book and I went last week. I will go this week if I’m not dead. Lol. I can entertain myself with scriptural truths and focus on just being supportive and loving as a person while I wait for Jesus to truly come and shine the light on the lies that have piled up. At least we can know that Jehovah sees us going even when we don’t want to. ??

    • Searcher

       I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin. – Romans 7:21-25 http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans7:21-25&version=NLT

      you may find this of encouragement

      http://perimeno.ca/God's%20Grace.htm

    • Srecko Sostar

      Hi! they have new “theocratic arrangement” to NOT answer the question??!! :)))))) I am very sure that this theocratic arrangement is based on one Bible verse, … here is: “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought TO ANSWER EVERY MAN.” Col. 4:6
      And Bethel elder stick with this counsel empowered by Legal Department lawyers; answering to people by not giving any answer. Only such idiotic excuse as answer; “we are not giving answer any more”. And that is an answer indeed, IF we like bureaucracy. Ahahahaa!

      Like your counterargument;”elders did not write the book” !!
      And again his “answer” who revealed much, that he can not give you his “opinion”. HIS opinion?? Does that mean how he is not believing in “global answer” done by GB?? :)))))))

      Hey Anderiega, be happy because “answer” is so close to you. You can see it, touch it, hear it 🙂

      • Anderiega

        Yep. As either Burt or Annie put it…we can only ask questions and speak freely HERE…and it feels very good to be able to do that. I temporarily forgot that yesterday..lol! It was literally only after *crying* to Jehovah in my prayers that I happened upon this website, and I’m so thankful that we at least have this outlet (in addition to prayer and Bible reading) to make sense of the current mess.

    • Joe Dman

      Sometimes we just need to let some of what we know out, somehow, somewhere. I have been down the last few weeks. Patience is a difficult thing. I struggle with it but what can one do. The only time i feel alive is when I’m conveying the truth to others. It’s a bitter sweet thing. The truth is sweet and satisfying as we take it in, but it’s a bitter message when we try to feed it to our brothers. If only they would listen. They’ll just have to learn the hard way.

  • thank you Jehovah

  • Burt Reynolds

    Looking at that building, one has a visual example of the love of the brothers in providing for the preaching work not only from their surplus, but from their need also. What a beautiful setting and pleasant looking building, so lovingly built by the sweat of the brothers and sisters for nothing more than the joy of being able to give something of small value to Jehovah. They will be blessed for their offering even though it does little to promote the worldwide preaching work.

    It is equally a stamp of authority from Satan who has offered these others who seek their own prominence and choose the best places at the table, ‘all the kingdoms of the world I will give you if you do one act of worship to me.’ They shall have their reward, just as the righteous thinking brothers and sisters that built it, will also have their reward, but from Jehovah.

  • Sun

    Christ presence, this is very eacy when is Christ presence? Jesus said it, yust read:

    Matthew 24:3Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

    3 Later, Jesus was sitting at a place on the Mount of Olives. The followers came to be alone with him. They said, “Tell us when these things will happen. And what will happen to prepare us for your coming and the end of time?”

    Matthew 24:30Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

    30 “Then there will be something in the sky that shows the Son of Man is coming. All the people of the world will cry. Everyone will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds in the sky. He will come with power and great glory.

    Now all know!!

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